I am taking advantage of Demon Performance's awesome deal on some Vortech V3's and quickly went from just starting to plan a build (i.e. I knew I wanted a lot more power) to trying to cobble together my semi-complete plan in a short time now that the specific power-adder is known. I have several questions that I just sent to Skip who I know will do an awesome job of helping me given his outstanding reputation for customer service on this forum, but I figured I'd also throw it out to the community since I've been reading as many threads as I can for the past week or so and haven't necessarily located a consolidated answer. I know there are a lot of owners out there who were in my position at one point in time so I'm eager to hear from experiences...
First, what kind of gauge pods are available? I'd like one that matches the 2008 stock interior A-pillar so it looks factory. Are there multiple choices or even one at all? Not sure on the number of pods. There's about 4 gauges i'd like but realistically won't get at the moment (trans temp, fuel pressure, boost, and AFR). I know the AFR is the most important, but what would the second, third, and fourth most-important gauges be?
At the very least I'll get AFR. I do like the AEM Failsafe Digital AFR/boost gauge combo though.
After I get the kit I'll own two DS Predators. Should I consider ditching those for a Trinity? Regarding the DS Trinity, does it have the ability to take the place of any of these gauges full-time if mounted in a pod?
Ideally I need my tranny to hold for one year. I just turned 70k and I changed all fluids in the vehicle except for the tranny fluid. I know I will be doing the tranny fluid and filter at the time of install, but I'm also thinking it may be good to add a tranny cooler (like a B&M SuperCooler or equivalent) and Blue Top Solenoids at the time of install. I don't want to fork out $1900 for a upgraded valvebody at this time, so that will have to wait for the full tranny upgrade. Thoughts?
Taking into account the need for reliability of my stock tranny, there's no point in me initially pushing the boost past the base Vortech level (via pulleys/etc). Therefore, I believe I am okay at this point with the kit's supplied 52# injectors (as opposed to upgrading to 80#s). I've seen some threads that voice concern about the BAPs...should I be worried about the BAP now or only after I start going past the Vortech's base boost?
Thoughts on the base Vortech tune? I know that CMR's are always better (I have a custom tune from Johan now), but I'm wondering if the base Vortech tune will be just fine for now so I don't have to get a CMR now and then one year from now when I pick up a tranny/converter/bigger injectors/etc.
Thanks everyone, and if I left out anything that you all think I should consider please let me know.
I can answer a lot of these questions for you.
I installed a Vortech V3 on my 2008 JGC SRT8 back in May 2011. I have since put on 25,000KMS on it.
First, if you are stock you will see 7-8 lbs as THAT is how much the kit makes stock with the 32 tooth pulley. Second I have been using my stock tranny this whole time and with a mild tune it was totally fine. I switched to a 30 tooth pully last summer as well and it held up okay. HOWEVER regarding the tranny YES you will need to replace it down the road. Mine is slipping and it always went into limp mode on the 3-4 shift whenever I tried out any tune that made more power. My tranny is currently failing now and it has popped out of gear a few times and refused to work until I played with it a bit, but it's days are definitely numbered I am currently in the process of getting an SHR from Skip. Hurry hurry!
This brings me to my next point: There is a current group buy on the SHR Viking transmission (I'm in line waiting too lol) that ends at the end of January, so I suggest getting on that to save money in the future. Mind you, I did get 25,000kms out of my tranny before it became a liability but that's with a mild tune and running anywhere from 7-10lbs of boost. So it's possible but it WILL go eventually.
I am also running Autometer Cobalt gauges and they go quite nice with the factory cluster. I am only using the Kenne Bell BAP and it's been fine thus far no shortage of fuel issues but you do need a wideband gauge for sure (or a trinity I guess) to be safe.
The A-Pillar looks fine with my 08', It's not perfect but it fits great and looks fine, doesn't stand out horribly or anything.
LAFNGAS@TTC wrote "vortech was the 1st to the market and has proved itself most definetly, im just speaking as a fellow canadian with where our daily driven winter vehicles at times have to see -40*c/-40*f sometimes for weeks on end and even then the average usual temp is in the -25*c/-13*f. allowing the vehicle to idle/run for the usual 10-15mins to allow the head unit to warm up would be strongly advised and even then could take the s/c belt off probably and not worry about having to turn the supercharger at all"
I agree Vortech is great and I live in Edmonton. A lot of people seem to be very nervous about running a V3 head unit in this frozen climate.
I just want to let everyone know that this is my second ridiculously cold winter with my Vortech and it's been great. I had the same concerns as you and then "Lefty" who is in Calgary as well, runs his all year around and ensured me it would be fine. All I do is plug in when it's cold and stay out of boost until she is nice and warm just like LAFNGAS@TTC said all you have to do is give the Jeep time to warm up about 10 mins or so and no issues at all. So don't worry about that, I did not have to disconnect the blower. With just the Vortech kit installed and no other mods with a MILD tune I ran easy mid 12's and this kit should get the average guy high 11's with a serious tune so it's a great start to getting seriously fast.
Good luck with your build, if you have any other questions let me know.